Ephemera - 4th January, 2015

There hasn’t been a lot of new things to see, read, or hear in the last few weeks, being the holiday season and all. Here is what I scrounged up.

Reading

The Martian by Andy Weir

This self-published novel is possibly the best book I read in 2014. I had just finished up Kim Stanley Robinson’s Mars Trilogy, which were also excellent reads, and was lucky to have The Martian waiting next to keep my Mars bender going. Andy Weir takes the Robinson Crusoe trope and realistically applies it to an astronaut on Mars. Not only does Weir make it a believable conceit, he manages to make it a compelling read too.

The Tragedy of the American Military by James Fallows - The Atlantic

I’ll read anything by James Fallows, but a screed on the role of the armed forces in American society and how a public and political disconnect with them has led to rampant militarism? Sign me up.

Watching

We Built A Drone by Gregor MacLennan - Digital Democracy

Using drones to empower citizens in indigenous communities in Guyana. It’s nice to have this as a counterpoint to the use of drones for warfare.